tv BBC Newsnight WHUT July 1, 2012 8:00am-8:30am EDT
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>> this week, the queen met for the first time a former ira commander, once considered a terrorist. >> if you got to meet the queen, what would you say to her? >> we are now amid all the gloom for the global economy. meet nobel prize-winning economist joseph stabler. >> if you begin with the wrong diagnosis, you will get the wrong prescription, and you have been giving them the wrong prescription. >> and a chance for a song. a great opera singer tells why he still has unfulfilled ambitions on the stage. hello. dramatic and unprecedented -- they are overused words, but in
the case of what has happened this week in northern ireland, they are spot on. britain's queen elizabeth met amicably with the deputy first minister of northern ireland. nothing remarkable in that except that mr. mcginnis is a former member of the irish republican army, the anti- british armed group that murdered her cousin during the civil conflict. peter taylor reported from northern ireland throughout the troubles, including another visit from the clean 35 years ago when the response to her arrival was quite different. he reflected on the difference which three decades had made. >> the clean set forth in a northern ireland that was a world away from the troubled province she visited 35 years ago. back then in 1977, i made this controversial film about the queen's tour, which took place
in one of the most violent series of the conflict. >> in this atmosphere, the different beliefs and aspirations, understand that if this community is to survive and prosper, they must live and work together in friendship and forgiveness. >> it was due to be shown in peak time on the last day of her visit. then, 10 minutes before it was due to go on air, regulators stop the film's transmission. it later trickled out over the network in a late-night slot. the ostensible reason for stopping the film was a legal problem over the inflammatory words spoken by a militant republican. we were not allowed to hear his voice. but i have always believed that
the real reason for stopping the film was because its message was in direct conflict with the spin that the then labor government of the day wanted to place on the visit. ministers wanted to present the queen as the great healer of the division between the two communities, but historically, she was symbolic of the division itself. i saw how the visit highlighted the bitter enmity between loyalists and republicans. there was to be no healing here. >> we do not expect a british queen. we never will accept a british queen. we do not want her here at all. she is not our clean. >> the second day of the visit, just before the royal helicopter was due to land -- >> in 1977, security was so precarious that her majesty was not allowed to spend a night in the province. she was helicoptered in, helen -- having stayed offshore. she was greeted at the castle by a cheering but carefully
selected crowd. while the queen was being welcomed, the provisional ira mounted a roadblock a few miles away. we were told earlier in the day that this was it. more propaganda than military exercise. perhaps for our benefit, perhaps as a morale booster for supporters. the checkpoint lasted five brief minutes. but it happened within half a mile of an army post, which was up around the corner, out of sight. that afternoon, 3000 supporters of the provisional ira hailed elizabeth as queen of death in a black 5 march -- flag march. >> we were not allowed in the city center. the march was banned.
>> after the preliminary skirmish, battle proper commenced. the army tries to outflank our drivers but is driven back. this is the face the queen did not see. in 1977, the unionist politician john taylor tell me the ira was on the run. five years earlier, he had been machine gun by the official ira. how do protestants regard the visits of the queen? >> of course they were delighted that she has come because for several years, they have been complaining that there appeared to be little interest by the royal family on the bigger problems we are having in our land. we are thrilled. and it comes at a time when
changes are taking place in our land when it does appear that the ira are in retreat. >> the predictions proved premature. two years later, the ira blew up the boat of the queen's cousin. the bomb also killed two family relatives and a member of the crew. the ira followed up the attack by killing 18 soldiers on the same day in a double bombing, and it was to be almost another 20 bloody years before the ira ended its campaign and finally signed up to the good friday agreement. i reminded john taylor of what he told me 35 years ago. >> why did you say that -- why was that the feeling at the time? >> morel was under attack from the british majority in northern ireland.
likewise, the nationalist community was increasing in numbers, so politically, the british majority were under attack, and there was a suspicion that the english could not be relied upon, so the fact that her majesty was coming was great for morale amongst the british majority. >> in 1977, i filmed the funeral of paul mcwilliams, an ira teenager who had been shot by the army. i interviewed some of the women who have followed his coffin. >> we do not regard ourselves as british subjects. we are not british subject. >> do you think she is not a bravely for coming to belfast? >> i think i am braver than her. i would not give her any medals for coming up to northern ireland. >> i finally tracked down
eileen shock and replay the interview i did with her in 1977. >> have you changed your views now, given that the clean is about to come to belfast again? >> no. in fact, i feel stronger. i am getting older. nothing has changed. the queen is the figurehead of repression. >> strip searches and the condition of iconic republican prisoners are among the issues that fuel the anchor of dissidents. and if you got to meet the clean, what would you say to her? >> i would not waste my breath on her. >> the a rival of the queen was cause for great celebration in the packed streets.
helen greg died some time ago, so i've visited the women's center to see if royal fervor was as strong as ever. when i showed them the film, it was no surprise it proved undiminished. but unable to get one of the 10,000 tickets and were going to decorate it in jubilee colors. >> i love all the royal family and am glad to see this has come here. >> but will loyalist war drums fall silent when martin mcguinness shake the hand of the queen? >> i was pleased to see him do that. >> because the ira murder of her cousin, shaking hands may be difficult for the queen as well.
>> i think it would be difficult for the queen as well, and this may be one -- a difficult one for the queen today. i think it sends a strong and clear message to the people of northern ireland, but the queen would shake his hand. i have no doubt whatsoever because of the lady that she is. she will do this. >> today, the dark clouds of 1977 seem a million miles away. private harrison was the 270 of soldier to die in northern ireland. another 233 were to follow before peace finally came. when martin mcguinness shakes the queen's hand, it will be a historic event of enormous significance for both communities. >> do you hope mr. mcinnis 6 her majesty's hand?
>> i would feel more hesitant shaking the hand of ira, especially since i got 10 bullets through my head at one time. >> do you think martin mcguinness should shake the queen's hand? >> as a republican, i have no objections. as a joint force minister, he also has to remember he is representing all the community. >> not all sections of the republican community are prepared to work on the queen. dissidents made it abundantly clear that the queen was an unwelcome foreign minister. >> if martin mcguinness were to meet the queen and shake her hand, what would your reaction be? >> my reaction would be -- wake up and smell the coffee. you told those lies years and years ago. you do not recognize the court. you do not recognize the queen.
and a lot of people dead -- young lads, mothers, sitting klan's thinking about their children, and he is going to shake the hand of the woman who put them there. if he calls himself a republican, got help ireland. >> the attitude of many republicans towards the queen began to change when she visited dublin last year. >> in the circumstance, it did have a healing effect. unlike in 1877 where it was viewed as trouble is, and -- >> i look forward to the day when the americans enjoy the people of northern ireland from the better and happier times, so
long awaited and so richly deserved. >> when martin mcguinness shakes the queen's hand, it may suggest that day has finally come. >> that was peter taylor reporting on queen elizabeth's visit to northern ireland. the global economy remains in a stated continuing crisis, and at the center of that crisis is yet again the eurozone. to discuss where we go from here, i spoke to the german environment minister and a nobel prize-winning economist. >> you have also been very consistent in what you have written about austerity. you said it is effectively suicidal. we do not accept that angela merkel's position, if she were to say, let's just get a lot of money to southern european economies -- that would be suicidal? >> part of the problem is the diagnosis of the underlying problem. spain and ireland had a surplus before the crisis.
they have a deficit because europe is in recession. it is the recession that caused the deficit, not the other way round. it began with the diagnosis, you will get the wrong prescription, and germany has been giving them the wrong prescription. german prescriptions over the last three years have led to a depression in spain. one out of two spanish people are out of work. they want to work. the unemployment rate has gotten consistently higher. it is now approaching one out of four. those prescriptions have not worked. the case of greece -- number one in reforms. he cannot do everything overnight in a democracy, but they have done an awful lot. >> let me bring in peter on that.
austerity may be right for a very healthy economy like germany, but it has been terrible for spain and greece. >> we have agreed on a growth package. that is what is on the agenda today and tomorrow. second thing -- some reforms have been implemented, and for the first time, we see some interesting signs of a growing economy again. as far as spain is concerned -- >> [inaudible] >> it depends on the ones you are considering. we have the impression is the greek economy is starting to recover. in spain, we have to admit, it is just a couple of months since the new prime minister took over. he has introduced a number of reforms. it is much too early to see a real effect of these reforms. what we have to provide its solidarity. we made clear we want to preserve the euro as a common currency for all member states.
what he made clear it is germany is prepared to encourage growth by spending more, and what they have made clear is that he has to undergo reforms. >> if you were talking to the german taxpayer tonight who is funding all this, what is in it for them? why should they do this without the austerity, without the reforms? >> the breakup of the euro for germany, the loss is very high. let's talk about the growth part. everybody agrees that you need growth. they agree on that. last july, a year ago, nothing happened. what about the agreement they are talking about right now? $150 billion or so? most of that is old money repackaged. my understanding is about $10
billion on that is really new money. >> is part of your point that germany has benefited and everybody agrees, from being in the euro? because germany had a kind of moral duty, therefore, to try to end some of this inequality by spreading the money around? >> i think there is some interest if they can understand, the enlightened self interest, rather than the short- sighted self-interest. i think it is in their long-term self-interest to do this. i do think there is a sense of solidarity. i do not mean tie your heads together as you go over the cliff, a suicide pact. i mean solidarity helping some countries that are having difficulty because of a global downturn caused by the united states. >> just as we round of our conversation, we have 17 countries in the eurozone right now. do you think in five years' time there will still be 17 countries in the eurozone? >> i would say 17 countries or
even more. >> you think it will become so popular that people will be clamoring to join rather than get out of it? >> there are many countries interested in joining the eurozone. it is my prediction that the euro has been stabilized, greece is now a reliable partner, and in spain and italy, we have just to cope with spreads and interest rates, but basically, these are sound economies, and we can overcome this crisis. >> they would be sound economies if the policies of austerity were not being imposed on them. if it was a real commitment to growth, which would require a european solidarity fund for stabilization. if there were a guaranteed fund for all banks. without that, money is going to flow from these countries and germany. because the german government is
backing german banks as an implicit subsidy, and un-level playing field. if you really address the fundamental problems, then the strengths of european countries are very strong. >> we see every day politicians in europe -- this is a political project. we are committed to it. is that encouraging to you, given that the economics are not quite going the way you have described? >> i have heard them say that for a long time, and i have not yet heard the kind of solidarity, the kind of real agreement and understanding of what needs to be done. it is not that complicated with an economic point of view. if you have money that can flow easily around the single market, you have to have a single banking system, single guaranteed, and a single
regulator. i agree with it. you need to have a framework that works. you need to have a solidarity fund for growth. >> now for something a little more melodic. he rose to fame after coming in second for singer of the world in 1989. known for his grand opera roles, he has courted the wanger -- wagner market. this week, he sprang a surprise, appearing for an encore at the end of a concert by the simon all of our -- simon bolivar orchestra. my colleague when to meet him. >> how did this extraordinary secret surprise come about? >> i had meetings here and thought maybe i could do an encore.
it is exciting for me. just to hear them play it for the first time, it is incredible. but that is enthusiasm for you. tremendous. i am singing about the wonderful bridge that goes into valhalla. the gods had just cleared the skies and build a bridge for us. i want them to think of it as kind of a bridge for them. >> how do you calibrate when you are working with different directors? >> i am quite young in the
wagnerial torrential waters. i cannot wait now to sing a full ring cycle on my own in britain. yes, i was incredibly honored to be part of the new cycle at the metropolitan opera, be it controversial or not. the youngsters that came to see it in bided absolutely adored it. >> when did you hear your first offer? do you know? >> i remember exactly. it was othello. i was given a seat by bbc wales to review the evening. i gave it such a glowing, fantastic review. that was the ignition that i needed. the candle lit. there was this year -- a moment, and i thought that this was what i wanted to do. >> when you can singer of the
world, that catapulted to into your future stardom. >> i would say that it catapulted dmitri, the eventual winner, and he was the clear favorite. whereas i took my time and some smaller roles in opera houses in britain. >> but you were out front from the start. did you have a handicap at first? did it put added pressure on you? >> maybe i cut my teeth more. without knowing it, i was being given indication of how to perform from an early age. >> what roles have we done that you would love to do? >> i never sang in the of the russian repertoire. maybe if i could have some swan song at the end of my opera career.
maybe an offer written by -- opera written by sondheim again. i have and offer a night, which is most probably my bread and butter with three wonderful singers. the welsh national opera orchestra and chorus will hop onto a bus and then perform on stage. this does not happen very often. yes, it is a little bit like the festival i had in north wales. can see the quiet churchyard down below ♪ >> you are very proud of your heritage, are you not? >> i am incredibly proud, and i
do not think i should be afraid of having a kind of ambassadorial shoulder that carries something the kids -- maybe that is this festival here in the corner of london. i even started a foundation. the talent that came from this small country is magnificent. going back to my foundation, i would like to even have the tip of the foundation in new zealand. i think maybe will i become a politician or run an opera house was the end of my career -- i do not know. [applause]
>> that is all for this week. from all of us, goodbye. >> sense of international news and bbc.com/news. >> funding for this presentation is made possible by the three men foundation in new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu, nion -- newman's own foundation, and union bank. >> at union bank, our relationship managers work hard to understand the industry you operate in. working to nurture new ventures and help provide capital for key